With a short school break between classes, I had the opportunity to go cycling a bit on Saturday morning. This is pretty rare so I wanted to do some exploring. I went to Balcones Wilderness Preserve west of where I live, north of Austin and took a jaunt down a road called Cattle Creek.
It was a great ride, lots of twists and turns with rolling hills, crossing the creek at various points. The traffic was minimal, probably 10 or fewer cars on the passing me on the road the entire time. It was cold, but I warmed up halfway through so figuring out where to stick everything for the return trip I shed at the halfway point was tricky. This is the first time I’ve taken my nice camera with me on a ride, and I’m pleased with how it turned out.
It’s rides like these that make me feel more and more pleased with the bike I chose last fall. The Grail is a gravel bike, which was not really a thing when I was younger riding mountain bikes. It’s basically a road bike with clearance for larger tires, as well as other geometric differences. Another road for gravel bikes, which fits what I was looking for, is an all-road bike. You can ride effectively on the road, getting up to decent speeds without unreasonable exertion, while also comfortably tackling gravel roads, or even single-track. Couple the gravel bike with a set of tubeless slicks for road rides and the chip-seal roads in this part of Texas are not a problem.